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Young man there’s no need to feel down

Written By: - Date published: 8:11 am, May 14th, 2018 - 248 comments
Categories: humour, Media, social media lolz, sport, the praiseworthy and the pitiful - Tags: ,

In possibly the greatest burn since the great fire of London in 1666 the Canterbury Rugby Union at the same time tried to console Israel Folau for being in a team that lost an unloseable game and ridicule his homophobic beliefs.

The context was that in their recent game Folau’s team the Warratahs had burst out to a 29-0 lead over home team the Canterbury Crusaders but then in an unbelievable choke managed to lose the game 31-29.

Folau has attracted unfortunate attention for publicly expressing homophobic beliefs publicly twice in recent times.

Some dagg who had control of the speaker system played Village People’s LGBT anthem YMCA during a break in the final minute of the game when the Crusaders had magically regained the lead.

If you have been living in a time warp for the past 40 years here it is.

Oh to have seen Folau’s face when this happened.

Twitter had fun.

https://twitter.com/TheNickCRBrown/status/995198999547162625

https://twitter.com/AboAbramowitz/status/995211596648464386

248 comments on “Young man there’s no need to feel down”

  1. Antoine 1

    Nothing like shaming others’ beliefs for a laugh

    • One Anonymous Bloke 1.1

      Good thing that isn’t what happened then isn’t it.

    • Bill 1.2

      Nothing like a shameful belief for a laugh.

    • Tracey 1.3

      Nothing like shaming vulnerable young people on the cusp of adulthood about their sexuality, especially against a group particularly vulnerable to suicide.

      How did it shame him Antoine? It’s just a song sung by people for decades? Even as an LGBT “anthem” how has that shamed him?

      • sirpat 1.3.1

        well it surely was meant to give him some stick for sure and Folau expressed his belief and has the right to do so but everyone jumps on his ass like his beliefs matter less than folks who are gay….I support both sides right to have say but everyone needs to lose their sticks they love bashing folks with.

    • Phil 1.4

      If that belief continues to perpetuate disgusting lies about a person at one of the most emotionally vulnerable times in their lives, by appealing to the authority of your imaginary friend, then you can be damn sure I’m going to shame you for that.

    • bwaghorn 1.5

      Some beliefs need shaming. I could right a long list . Religion . Anti gay . Beliefs based around ancient practises. Unfettered free markets. Go on add one you’ll enjoy it

  2. James 2

    Singling our a person for their beliefs in front of x thousand people – isn’t that bully behaviour ?

    • mickysavage 2.1

      You do get irony?

      And Folau is the one who has publicised his beliefs.

      https://www.playersvoice.com.au/israel-folau-im-a-sinner-too/

      • lucy 2.1.1

        micky your comments are of the lets bully the bully variety. Have you considered in what context Israel came to those beliefs. He was reiterating a Christian interpretation of homosexuality that was prevalent in all Western societies until the middle of last century. Some parts of society have moved on from this but not all. There are a number of New Zealand rugby players that have gone through our justice system for beating their female partners I do not see the rage directed to them for this. I don’t hear ‘Kiss With a Fist’ when Julian Savea comes on the field. But maybe homophobia is more important to you than domestic abuse.

        • tracey 2.1.1.1

          Some of us have railed against the hypocrisy of league and cricket and rugby in this regard. Tampering with a ball is a year-long suspension in cricket but in league you can do a home invasion, terrify a mother and child and become a marquee player for the Brisbane Broncos, gang rape, glass your girlfriend etc… Norm Hewitt smashed through a ranchslider and terrorised the occupants and became a poster child for drinking problems etc but not banned so I take your point..

          Is it bullying to play a song that represents other people’s positive attitude toward homosexuals?

          • james 2.1.1.1.1

            “Is it bullying to play a song that represents other people’s positive attitude toward homosexuals?”

            it is if you are targeting a single person

            • tracey 2.1.1.1.1.1

              You need to be more explicit in your definitions of bullying etc. Also, how do you know it wasn’t played to be supportive of LGBT in the crowd, to let them know Canterbury/Crusaders Rugby think they are ok?

            • North 2.1.1.1.1.2

              James, thus – “…….it is if you are targeting a single person”

              Why is it not in the least surprising that James, whose expressions are invariably negative to even casually hateful towards minorities, the poor and the relatively so, the weak, the vulnerable and beset, should write the tripe quoted above ?

              Folau targeted millions and millions and millions, one by one. There goes James’ bullshit. That Folau used his sporting stardom for additional punch makes it worse. A much more dangerous example of the Destiny Church charlatan Brian Tamaki’s comedic rave (earthquakes! earthquakes!) on the same topic.

              Folau, a homophobic moral bully, thugged-up in his religious zealotry, got his ! From a witheringly satirical send-up. Bloody good job !

              To hell with Folau……..only figuratively of course…….in contrast to his pose.

              • sirpat

                of course you must be right….James has no right to an opinion that differs from yours is what im hearing…”To hell with Folau……..only figuratively of course”…..well that what his lot are saying about you…..

        • mickysavage 2.1.1.2

          “micky your comments are of the lets bully the bully variety”

          Only if you consider light ribbing to be bullying.

          • lucy 2.1.1.2.1

            hmm 10 thousand people catcalling and whooping when a song deemed to be a “gay anthem” comes on – James seems directed to me. This is not light ribbing micky this was an attempt to inflame a drunken rugby crowd against a person and as someone who was in some of the anti Springbok demonstrations I know how intimidating that is!

            • Anne 2.1.1.2.1.1

              …as someone who was in some of the anti Springbok demonstrations I know how intimidating that is!

              That was nothing compared to what gay people have had to put up with over the decades/centuries. You are making false equivalences lucy.

              • mickysavage

                Second that.

              • lucy

                no I am saying that to be put at the mercy of a drunken, baying, catcalling rugby crowd is unpleasant to say the least, terrifying at worst as I can personally attest to! The equivalency had nothing to do with what gay people put up with. Unless the rugby crowd has changed they are more likely to be in sympathy with Israel but this was a way of undermining an opposition player. I just think that micky’s and many commenters gleeful acceptance of an attempt to humiliate a person who does not fall into their world view belittles them.

                • One Anonymous Bloke

                  What about those of us who’re celebrating a mass display of solidarity against hate speech from a bully-pulpit?

                • tracey

                  Rugby crowds are not the same as they were in 1981. Drunks get thrown out, security is everywhere.

                  Some can be as you describe for sure but I do believe you are making a false equivalency between 1981 and this. For a start YMCA is patently not a call to arms. And frankly having the kind of rugby people you describe standing up singing and doing the YMCA actions to support LGBT has a positive side to me. As someone who is a member of the LGBT community (whatever that really means), I applaud the Crusaders for vocally supporting the LGBT rugby community in such a light hearted way,

                  Free Speech works both ways doesn’t it?

                • mickysavage

                  I am not aware of there being any evidence of that. The only film I have seen suggested that there was a happy crowd and a happy end to the match. Strange definition of bullying …

                • Anne

                  … a drunken, baying, catcalling rugby crowd is unpleasant to say the least, terrifying at worst….

                  Agreed, except I thought booze was banned inside sport stadiums and boisterous football crowds are quite normal – not the least bit “terrifying” to the vast bulk of people.

                  As for gleeful acceptance… I can’t say I’ve seen any such acceptance here.

                  Stop telling porkies and go troll somewhere else.

                • Delia

                  Try being gay and being on the anti Springbok tours, because plenty of gays and lesbians were on those marches eh..talk about a double whammy.

                • sirpat

                  agree they should be ashamed to be doing the same thing that they are doing to Folau

            • tracey 2.1.1.2.1.2

              What does it mean when they play Sweet Caroline and 10,000 people whoop and holla and sing along?

              In cricket when someone is out they often play “I’ll say Goodbye”

        • Draco T Bastard 2.1.1.3

          He was reiterating a Christian interpretation of homosexuality that was prevalent in all Western societies until the middle of last century.

          Yeah, the middle of last century. He’s had plenty of time to correct his beliefs with the facts.

          There are a number of New Zealand rugby players that have gone through our justice system for beating their female partners I do not see the rage directed to them for this.

          The rage is there – it’s just not in the MSM who seem to prefer to hold these scum up as pillars of the community instead.

        • Delia 2.1.1.4

          Someone plays the well known Village people anthem and it is shocking bullying? Really, a song played thousands of times since it’s release. It is a tame, humorous response to a guy who openly shows his own prejudices. Tough.

        • tracey 2.1.2.1

          Why “believe” Carwyn would be horrified why not ask him and write about that?

          I do sense a little of the ” some of my best friends are gay” in his article and I have often found him to be poorly named. But he is paid to opine and opine he does but just cos he is paid to do so doesnt make his view more valid.

          Falou is not a victim in this. What does “just quoting the bible” even mean? Which Bible? There are many versions. King James?

          The Bible ought not be given a free pass. Falou is an adult. Stand behind your own words dont hide behind words written hundreds of years ago about a guy they never met.

          https://thespinoff.co.nz/featured/24-03-2016/a-reasoned-response-to-the-unreasonable-mark-reason-who-is-bad/

    • Sabine 2.2

      how dare people be intolerant of other peoples intolerance.

      • mickysavage 2.2.1

        +1

      • james 2.2.2

        The intolerance in this case is to pubically single out and bully someone because of their religious beliefs at their workplace in front of thousands of people.

        And you are OK with this?

        • One Anonymous Bloke 2.2.2.1

          Nope. The tolerance in this case was showing solidarity with the people Folau hates.

          • james 2.2.2.1.1

            “showing solidarity with the people Folau hates.”

            Find a single instance where he has something that backs that up?

            He answered a question on what he though gods plans were.

            But he hasnt showed anything that indicates or backs up your comment.

            Ironically he fronted the cover of the Star Observer magazine to show his support for the Bingham Cup, which is an international gay rugby competition for both men and women.

            Just because he believes thats what Gods plan is – dosnt mean he hates all gays.

            So lets see you find anything to back up your accusation ….

            • One Anonymous Bloke 2.2.2.1.1.1

              Sharing David Wilkerson videos is love. No, wait…

              • james

                So – no evidence that he hates gays like you stated huh?

                Not surprising.

                • One Anonymous Bloke

                  It’s right there in his own words, James. As I said to Bill, perhaps he’s just the sewer through which the hate passes, perhaps it’s actually self-hate, if you catch my drift.

                  You don’t experience it as hate. Do you understand that others do?

            • tracey 2.2.2.1.1.2

              Do you want people you love to go to hell? Is hell a good place by Christian belief?

              • james

                I dont believe in God – thus this is a moot point for me.

                BTW – he only said he believed that was Gods plan – he didnt say he wanted them to.

                • tracey

                  You are dancing on the pin again. I agree he is trying to save them from the pits of hell by scaring them into being more like him and using his twitter and fame platform to make their lives very uncomfortable until they find “Jesus”. I get that he thinks he is on a crusade to save us from ourselves but that doesn’t mean it comes from a place of love.

                  Does that seem like a better motivation to you?

                  • Bewildered

                    Tend to a agree I suggest he also feels a degree of self righteousness and reward re martyrdom and persecution he is facing as did his Christian forebearers, it’s all part of the course and probably a win win in his mind

                • patricia bremner

                  In another life, people like him burned witches because….

          • Bill 2.2.2.1.2

            Folau has not stated any antipathy for gay people. He has said (quite clearly) that it’s God, through his book, that deems homosexuality to be a sin. Stack that back up against “the good book’s” “love thy neighbour” stuff, and you don’t get any expression of personal animosity towards gay people from Folau.

            Ripping the idea that homosexuality is sinful is definitely up for grabs. So is ripping the messenger and their vehicle, for promulgating that tosh.

            But stating that Folua hates gays is something else again.

            • One Anonymous Bloke 2.2.2.1.2.1

              That is a question of motivation: what goes on between his ears. I’m concerned by his behaviour, which embodies hate.

              Perhaps he’s an empty vessel, a mere conduit for the hate. Perhaps it’s really self-hate, eh.

              • mauī

                If you’re concerned about hate for others, here are some of the tweets in response to Folau.

                “Thanks for f***ing up my ability to cheer for you ya d***head”
                “Good rugby player. Bad human being. What a shame”
                “What a selfish view. All respect for you is now gone.”

                [Source: The Dailymail]

                • tracey

                  And do those people have 124,000 followers on tweet and a fame platfrom for their views? If anything it kind of shows that his “love” message didn’t hit the mark.

              • Bill

                What behaviour of his that embodies hate?

                He promulgated a laden and deeply negative perspective on homosexuality through the act of spreading what he considers “the word of God”.

                Spreading “the word of God”, objectionable on many levels as it is, isn’t in and of itself behaviour that embodies hate.

                • One Anonymous Bloke

                  What behaviour of his that embodies hate?

                  He promulgated a laden and deeply negative perspective on homosexuality…

                  Yep, that’s it. Another example might be spreading The Protocols of the Elders of Zion, or Donald Trump’s thoughts on Muslims and Mexicans.

                  These are hateful actions; whether they are motivated by hate, fear, ignorance or stupidity (and it’s usually all three), the outcome is the same.

                  • Sabine

                    +1

                  • Bill

                    Spreading the supposed “word of God” isn’t hateful.

                    Do you agree with that, or was the selective slicing and dicing of my comment in a way that avoids that premise and preserves the line about Folau’s “hateful behaviour” down to something else?

                    I know nothing about “The Protocols of the Elders of Zion”, so won’t comment on that, but echoing Trump’s thoughts on Muslims and Mexicans isn’t even close by way of a comparative example to what Folau did – if that’s what you were trying to provide.

                    • One Anonymous Bloke

                      No, I don’t agree that spreading the word of “god” isn’t hateful. As Tom Robbins once riffed, religion isn’t just the opium of the masses, it is the cyanide. Lao Tsu said that it is the end of love and honesty … the origin of folly.

                      Further, this wasn’t just any old word of “god” being spread – it was a specific judgement about people’s eligibility for compulsory eternal suffering.

                      We don’t agree, and I have no interest in recruiting you to my perspective.

                • McFlock

                  I’d say that the behaviour that embodies hate is spreading what he considers the relevant part of the word of god.

                  Because he didn’t spread the bits about “love thy neighobur” and “judge not lest ye be judged” and “let those without sin cast the first stone”, and “God is love” etc etc etc.
                  He focused solely on the fire and brimstone.

                  I think which bits of a holy text one chooses to emphasises over others, even in response to a direct question, are a bit like interpreting a Rorschach inkblot. One focuses on the bits one intrinsically agrees with, and tends to ignore the bits about eating fish without scales.

                  • Bill

                    According to the link provided way back up yonder, he responded to a specific question on God’s plan for gays with Corinthians 6: 9-10 – which has nothing to do with damnation.

                    So not so much “fire and brimstone” as inheriting the kingdom of God – which by my piecemeal understanding of biblical texts is earthly and around the “the meek shall inherit the earth” stuff.

                    But yes, bias will definitely determine what quotes or passages anyone is more likely to pull from a book like the Bible or Koran or whatever.

                    I daresay there are passages in the Bible that would suggest much worse (for gays) than getting dropped from the will and missing out “Daddy’s” inheritance.

                    The idiotic shit he peddled by way of his (no doubt) heart felt belief, deserves a piss ripping response. But it doesn’t on its own deserve condemnation of the level that would have him tarred as a gay hating piece of scum (or whatever).

                    And given the broader context is arguably religious stupidity and intolerance, wouldn’t there be certain irony in any head long rush to hold up such a condemnatory judgement of the guy?

                    • McFlock

                      Yeah, nah, that’s not what the nuns taught me about the kingdom of god.

                      It’s not about dad’s earthly inheritance, but experiencing dad’s love vs utter and eternal abandonment. Which, depending on one’s theological era, can be the actual experience of hell, or at least one level of it.

                      He wasn’t talking about missing out on a lotto win.

                    • tracey

                      The video he posted is quite graphic about what to expect in Hell

                    • Bill

                      Aye well, that were the nuns. (Nuns knows best?)

                      But then there are the “Assemblies of God” and whatever the hell their direct and “not open for interpretation”…erm, interpretation of the bible would have them believe about Kingdoms and what not.

                      I had a quick look and there looks to be enough factions to wear out any arm waving a stick.

                      If he’d still been Mormon, then maybe we could have pinged Jacinda off an OIA request and gotten to the bottom of it 🙂

                      All of that aside, when a person is boxed in by something like this and given no room for maneuver (The Mad Butcher comes half to mind), where do they go? They do some “walk of shame” that’s designed to put them down while elevating their righteous accusers, or they double down.

                      I don’t see any merit in that insofar as it smacks of imposing some quite basic (and dare I say religious?) dynamic of good and bad.

                    • McFlock

                      One can tiptoe through the tulips hoping that he’ll change how he interprets a core part of his faith, or one can make it clear to the people he’s helping ostracise that they’re not alone and do so with equal fervour to his alienation of them.

                      I don’t see how both can be done.

                    • Bill

                      You’re commenting on two different things there McFlock. I’m leaving aside the solidarity portion of your comment, because I think that’s taken as read.

                      On your other point, I haven’t said anything that should have conveyed any suggestion to go “tip-toeing through the tulips”.

                      What I’ve tried to point to, is the habit of presenting a black and white scenario to those deemed “wrong”. It’s a very christian to do (ie, in the vein of damnation or salvation).

                      If you want that someone might reflect and maybe see things differently, or act differently etc, then condemning them off the bat isn’t ever going to do that. All that does is entrench positions that orbit around a “right” and a “wrong” that both broad positions find various subjective reasons of justification for.

            • Ankerrawshark 2.2.2.1.2.2

              Ok if he doesn’t hate gays Bill (and I hope that’s true) he won’t mind them playing ymca at all

          • e-clectic 2.2.2.1.3

            Please cite precisely where Folau hates gays.

            • One Anonymous Bloke 2.2.2.1.3.1

              Read my responses to Bill and James, and get back to me with any further requests.

              • e-clectic

                Yep – checked em – nothing explicit there and no references except to a Dave Wilkerson video from which you infer that Folau hates gays. Show me an explicit reference where Folau says that he hates gays.

                • One Anonymous Bloke

                  See my response to Bill at 1:23.

                • tracey

                  May you rot in hell unless you come to see my invisible friend as your saviour. Are you feeling the love?

        • tracey 2.2.2.2

          Can you explain how playing a song to show support of any LBGT spectators is bullying Folau? It is certainly confronting a contrary view to his but is that bullying?

    • One Anonymous Bloke 2.3

      The bully got what was coming to him: a cheerful song. Poor wickle buwwy.

    • Sanctuary 2.4

      Home court advantage is a bitch.

    • ankerawshark 2.5

      Read my comment below James. I think its called satire. Falous personality, rugby playing skills, appearance, intellect and Christian beliefs per se weren’t singled out.

      It was an extremely damaging belief that has lead to damaging the mental health of thousands of young and old Kiwis who are gay.

      Falou chose to put his beliefs in the public domain. This belief is going to attrack criticism and rightly so in my opinion. I think YMCA does satirize his beliefs……….He will need to find a way to manage being satirized.

      Criticizing his belief, by affirming the counter belief is o.k. imo

    • paul andersen 2.6

      no, its a song. bully behaviour is attacking someone and hiding behind a large faceless organisation, like organised religion.

    • Cardassian 2.7

      No force, coercion or threat. No abuse or intimidation. No repeated and unreasonable behaviour. Can’t see anything that would lead you to think that this is bullying. Really fits no definition of bullying.

  3. Reality 3

    James, do you not “get” it that Folau twittered (or whichever medium it was on) his beliefs to tens of thousands in a most narrow and judgemental way in the first place. It could be said he used his profile to demean others in what I would not call a Christian way.

    • James 3.1

      It’s ironic that your handle is “reality” because that is not what happened at all.

      He simply responded to a question on one of his post asking what were his beliefs on gods plan for gays.

      He answered.

      That was it. He wasn’t running around tweeting “gays go to hell” etc.

      • One Anonymous Bloke 3.1.1

        cf: the link at 2.1

        He doubled down. And his beliefs cause real harm, or are you oblivious to the amount of violence directed at the LGBTQ community?

        • Carolyn_Nth 3.1.1.1

          Folau tripled down

          I can see a bit of both positions on this. When I saw Folau’s 3rd anti-gay message last week, my response was not to tweet/re-tweet it but ignore it.

          But how to stop the damage he is causing from the substantial public platform he has. And I suspect he now feels like its OK for him to continue with his anti-LGBTI messages.

          Taking the piss that way is a rugby/masculine style response. But maybe it’s fitting to the context. I doubt it will change Folau’s or other conservative Christian views. But it will encourage support for pro-LGBTI people in NZ rugby circles, which can often be pretty conservative.

          I don’t think it is Christianity per se that is the problem. Many Christians are not anti-gay. And the Christian response to anti-LGBTI views in the church could well be forgiveness.

          Brandi Carlile to pastor who refused to baptise her because she is gay

          • tracey 3.1.1.1.1

            Well said Carolyn.

            As someone who has been bullied int heir workplace, and watched others endure (and leave) due to the same bully, part of me feels uneasy about suggesting Folau has just been bullied. He has been backed by his employer for his right to speak out his views about gays going to hell, continues to play a game which involves his being paid(very well) to play and to promote the image of the game. He could resign from rugby, and find a different job which would remove him from his obligation to be a role model or to be “bullied” by the playing of a supportive LGBT song as his workplace. Rugby league that bastion of free speak and action, where you can beat wives, partners and strangers and still command a marquee salary have said they will welcome him back…

            I agree 100% @ your Christianity comment.

          • mauī 3.1.1.1.2

            Is he tripling down or is he just defending his belief system because he’s being attacked?

            • One Anonymous Bloke 3.1.1.1.2.1

              He attacked, and the counter-attack is more than he can handle. Now he’s on the defensive, where he should be.

            • tracey 3.1.1.1.2.2

              He is promoting his belief system to his 125,000 followers

              • james

                So – should he not be allowed to have beliefs?

                • tracey

                  Read all my comments on this thread james.

                  He can have all the beliefs in the world, but not when he is a role model for children and his beliefs can directly or indirectly harm them. There is a reason he is the highest paid rugby player in Aussie, and it is not cos of his religious beliefs and not just for how he plays, but the image he creates of the game to an audience.

                  He can leave rugby and become a plumber, or a teacher aid, or a missionary and have all the beliefs he likes.

                  • indiana

                    I think you may be holding this sports person as a role model for children. People used to try and hold Charles Barkley up the same way, but he wouldn’t have a bar of it.
                    http://www.newsweek.com/im-not-role-model-193808

                    • tracey

                      I am not holding him up as a role model. Read up on how children “choose” role models instead of quoting Barkley.

                  • e-clectic

                    You can have beliefs until you become a role model – LOL.

                    • tracey

                      LOL indeed

                      He can have beliefs and play a different sport, rugby league says they will have in a heartbeat. They are pretty accepting of errant behaviours, players glassing wives and girlfriends, rapists, home invaders.

                      It’s not like this is the only job he can get, it is just the one that pays ridiculous money.

                      You understand why he gets sponsorships ey? It is to leverage off his fame as a player to entice children and adults to buy products he endorses? The kids do that cos they think if they buy that stuff they will be like him. But you probably think that doesn’t impact sales, right cos he is just a player

                    • e-clectic

                      Don’t start throwing about a bunch of red herrings and strawman arguments.
                      Are you seriously saying that once a player becomes successful they can no longer have beliefs or express them?
                      Or does it depend on the beliefs?

                    • Tracey

                      No straw men. No red herrings. Read up on professional sporting contracts and the requirements to not bring the game into disrepute and uphold the image of the game. Falou wants the money but not the obligations.

                • One Anonymous Bloke

                  No-one is trying to muzzle him, James. Rather, people are responding to the hatred his words convey.

                  Outlawing belief would be a fool’s errand. That doesn’t mean harmful speech gets a free pass.

              • mauī

                I’d estimate about a third to maybe a half of the cold callers to my house are religious people. I think the last few were Jehovah’s and Latter Day Saints, pretty bloody annoying. If his twitter feed is about promoting beliefs (I don’t follow it to know) it wouldn’t be out of character.

                • tracey

                  His twitter feed is about his religious beliefs and his sponsorship promotions of course.

        • Bewildered 3.1.1.2

          Is there really that much violence, lgbt is all pretty ho hum these days which is good thing

          • tracey 3.1.1.2.1

            Are you or have you ever been a gay man? Is it ok if the violence has reduced but the snide comments and bullying hasn’t? There is a reason no high profile rugby player in NZ has come out as gay, and it is not because there haven’t been any, or bisexual.

            Or been marginalise/overlooked for promotions/not hired in sport organisations because you are a gay woman and dont fit their view of what someone who works for them should look like? This all still happens today, and so do beatings.

      • tracey 3.1.2

        You seem to have not noticed anything of his actions since his first tweeted response. Have a read of all his actions then come back a bit more informed.

        • james 3.1.2.1

          I think that this thread shows exactly how it was targeted at one person – and as such is bullying.

          • Anne 3.1.2.1.1

            If you want to know what bullying is then ask the homosexuals of yesteryear… hounded, harassed, imprisoned, taunted, physically abused and in many cases executed or killed simply because they were gay. A harmless non-threatening song at a football match is no comparison.

            Folau asked for a response when he makes such foolish statements and he now has to face the consequences. He is a fool.

            • james 3.1.2.1.1.1

              Its still bullying.

              • tracey

                Just making multiple posts with the word “bully” or “bullying” doesn’t make it a fact james.

                Do you know, for example, that he even knew it was targeted at him? That it is a LGBT anthem of sorts? Given the beliefs he has I have doubts he even knew it was an anthem. IF that were the case he wouldn’t have felt bullied?

                You still haven\t got round the issue that it may have equally have been played to tell LGBT rugby supporters that Crusader rugby accepts your sexuality.

          • cleangreen 3.1.2.1.2

            James; – you are always a bully come-on, be honest here please.

            Your whole character has been to be domineering always so get over it.

            “live and let live” – i say. Try it some time yiou might get to like it.

            Sayanara.

            • Robert Guyton 3.1.2.1.2.1

              Asking a bully to “be honest” about his bullying?
              Good luck with that, cleangreen.
              James could never see his, “Hey vegans! I’m having bloody dripping raw red meat for my “half-time at the rugger” snack”, as bullying! He’s just “celebrating the joys of a rare steak”

          • katipo 3.1.2.1.3

            @James: Perhaps if you had a track record of showing a proportionate amount of effort defending the rights of those in society who Falou condemns.
            You arguments would carry more weight.

            • james 3.1.2.1.3.1

              Katipo – Point out anywhere where he condemns them personally?

              He hasnt – heck – hes even promoted a gay rugby tournament.

              So if you had something to back up your comment – yours might carry some.

              • katipo

                Telling every Gay person they will go to hell unless they confess their sin of being Gay seems pretty personal to me.
                How about you provide a list of all the others you have defended with 10 or more comments on here.

                • james

                  “Telling every Gay person they will go to hell unless they confess their sin of being Gay seems pretty personal to me.”

                  But he never said that – he said thats what he believed Gods will was – which is different.

                  • tracey

                    …and he is getting to heaven by doing God’s will, you left that bit out. So yes, he is telling every gay person they will go to hell.

                    https://pbs.twimg.com/media/DaQseYuU0AEorE-.jpg

                    That highlighted passage says he is pleased to be taking on the evil to spread god’s word about the homosexuals needing to be saved from hell… Read the tweets james, he is a grown man, abdicating responsibility to an unproven, invisible being is not an excuse or something he can now hide behind and say “I didnt say gays will go to Hell, I said God says they will”.

                  • katipo

                    @james Still waiting for the list of other ‘bullied’ folks that you spend a similar amount of time defending against ‘intolerance’…
                    Tyson Fury?
                    Pauline Hanson?
                    Kanye West?
                    Vladimir Putin?
                    Mike Pence?

        • e-clectic 3.1.2.2

          If you’re alleging that Folau has completed a number of (anti gay?) actions then the burden of proof is with you.

          • james 3.1.2.2.1

            the (not so) funny thing is that they cannot.

            • One Anonymous Bloke 3.1.2.2.1.1

              Are you serious? This purported god creature mandates that “sinners” will suffer for eternity, people join the movement, and you can’t see where the hate resides?

              Pfft.

          • One Anonymous Bloke 3.1.2.2.2

            If you are so lazy you cannot read the various articles and tweets linked on this page the burden of relevance is on you.

            • james 3.1.2.2.2.1

              Beliefs and actions are two different things.

              As mentioned above – hes even help promote gay rugby tournaments. Not really anti-gay is that?

              • One Anonymous Bloke

                His actions are the vehicle that transports the hate. Whether the hate originates with him is hardly the point.

                “I was just passing on what it says in this book” isn’t an excuse. You certainly wouldn’t give a free pass to a communist just because they didn’t write Das Kapital.

  4. Ad 4

    Awesome game as well.

  5. Molly 5

    I’m not convinced that this type of behaviour is worth celebrating.

    I also only briefly looked into the initial incident and considered it not worth my time, and definitely not worth the media energy and twitterati mania that it has – and apparently still – harnesses.

    From recollection, a question was asked of him on his Twitter account – which he answered honestly. If there are people here who have not experienced the black and white view of homosexuality being expressed by the Christian religion, then I’d be very surprised. I disagree with his views, but I’m not surprised by them.

    And as for being a role model, that is a societal problem for making people universal role models for excelling in a particular avenue. After all, what is so difficult about saying “Fantastic player, – bit of a dick when it comes to everything else”?

    The problem here is that we ask for perfection from flawed human beings. Do we want people who are fundamentally honest, or would this storm have passed him by if he was a smooth and practiced liar? And how is this targeting going to get him – or others like him – to change their beliefs? If anything, it will have the effect of strengthening those views – because adversity and persecution sometimes acts as a catalyst for standing firm without any give at all.

    As the issue lies with certain churches views of homosexuality, that is where the hammer should be falling. But all those churches are hard to publicly humiliate, and so the easy path of picking on one individual continues.

    If this is progressive, it is progressing down a very slippery slope.

    • Stunned Mullet 5.1

      I find myself in complete agreement with your opinion.

    • One Anonymous Bloke 5.2

      See the lnk at 2.1: he doubled down.

      • Molly 5.2.1

        As I pointed out – that is only to be expected, given the intense media focus that he received.

        As for the link, TBH, despite disagreeing with him, I note that he did take the time to write out such a long essay explaining where he was coming from.

        “At times, you can feel alone and down. But Jesus told us that when you stand up for Him in this world, you can expect backlash. I find peace in that.

        As testing as it can be standing up for what you believe in, the Bible tells us it will be worth it in the end.”

        Pretty much reinforces what I mentioned above.

        The problem is still with the indoctrination of this Christian view, and that is what needs to be solved.

        • One Anonymous Bloke 5.2.1.1

          Good luck with that: the hate is deeply embedded in the book. As Lao Tzu said c.2500 years ago:

          Well established hierarchies are not easily uprooted;
          Closely held beliefs are not easily released;
          So religion enthralls generation after generation.

          Or Pinker, more recently:

          Counter-Enlightenment Convictions are ‘Surprisingly Resilient’

          So while freedom from religion is a worthy goal, it’s going to take a very long time, and during that time, protecting people from the hate is far more important than respecting the feelings of the hateful.

          • Molly 5.2.1.1.1

            The inflation of Israel’s views into something of media worth – is our problem.

            The reaction to this could have taken the perspective of “What a dickhead. But only to be expected, since he has such fundamentalist Christian beliefs”.

            Instead, the media and the non-engagers went to town.

            The question on his Twitter account – was it asked honestly and seeking his opinion from someone who view everything he says as “gospel”, or was it an easy bait? Because I can’t see any adult person who has had contact with Christianity expecting a different response.

            How does he treat the people in his life? Does he persecute them? Does anyone know? Or does he just hold these beliefs in his mind, and treat them the same as he treats everyone else?

            Of course I don’t agree with the hate and wrongheadedness of this view of homosexuality by many churches. I also don’t like bullies, even if the bully is me.

            There is a lot of hate being directed his way. I don’t agree with its intensity and focus, primarily because I think the effect on those harmful beliefs are going to be to strengthen them.

            • One Anonymous Bloke 5.2.1.1.1.1

              How does he treat the people in his life? Does he persecute them?

              Yes, he does: as Carolyn_nth says at 3.1.1.1, he has in fact tripled down on the hate. The people in his life are under no illusion about what is in his mind, and so far as I’m concerned, they are the ones whose well-being is threatened, and are far more deserving of solidarity and respect than he is.

              When we have our feet on his throat it will be time to consider his feelings.

              • Molly

                OAB. That is another link to a source that helps with the indoctrination of harmful beliefs, not an example of his personal behaviour that has hurt others.

                This focus on one individual for honestly stating his religious beliefs is bullying. The issue is still with the religious leaders who promote this crap.

                The harm he does to the LGBT community – has been magnified by the intense media focus. That is our problem. If his status as a ‘role model’ intensifies that harm, that is our problem for giving undeserved emphasis to people for any utterings they may have, just because they have achieved in one aspect of life or gained public notoriety. If other Christians with the same harmful views are then given further exposure because of this story – that is our problem

                • One Anonymous Bloke

                  He’s assisting the indoctrination of harmful beliefs, and that isn’t an example of his personal behviour that harms others?

                  I disagree.

                  And yes, the fact we tolerate churches in our midst, targeting our children and other vulnerable citizens, is indeed a problem society needs to address.

                  • Molly

                    “He’s assisting the indoctrination of harmful beliefs, and that isn’t an example of his personal behviour that harms others?”
                    We – as the public – gave media attention to his views, and we – as the public – said that his views matter because he is a role model.

                    We should take responsibility for these things as well.

                    • One Anonymous Bloke

                      I think most members of the public are sufficiently insulated from his influence to escape direct harm. Obviously his behaviour has a greater and more detrimental impact on the LGBTQ community, but his primary victims are those – family members etc. – who are closest to him.

                      The fact that we tolerate the institutional indoctrination that has so warped his ethics and morals is shameful, but that doesn’t mean we should just stand by and watch while he inflicts it on others.

                    • Molly

                      “but his primary victims are those – family members etc. – who are closest to him.”
                      But we have no evidence of harm provided by those closest to him, making it possible that what he says and how he acts in real life with real humans that he cares about moves from the academic biblical interpretation to engagement. Which is a contradiction of values. And if engagement is possible on a personal level, the challenge to his personal views is much higher and likely to have beneficial results.

                      Is the intent to change his perspective, or is it just to have a public focus to show solidarity for LGBTQ people?

                    • One Anonymous Bloke

                      Is the intent to change his perspective, or is it just to have a public focus to show solidarity for LGBTQ people?

                      I think I answered that above: “religion enthralls generation after generation”. While religious participation and belief is apparently slowly dwindling, it will take (I think) centuries until it is no longer a threat. In the meantime, we have an immediate responsibility to those it threatens the most.

                • One Two

                  Molly, you are on solid ground with the position…

                  Completely agree with you…

                • mauī

                  Great points Molly.

                • tracey

                  I agree with the media having a field day and not thinking about wider implications. I don’t know how many followers he has but he is widely admired in rugby and rugby league circles where homophobia is still rampant on and off the field.

                  • Molly

                    ” I don’t know how many followers he has but he is widely admired in rugby and rugby league circles where homophobia is still rampant on and off the field.”
                    I don’t know much about rugby or rugby league, but apparently he is a very good player. And just like all the other really good players, that should be the limit of their importance in the scheme of things. It is our insistence on making our players demi-gods that give them both visibility and credence – despite their level of knowledge or expertise.

                    This focus on one player is not addressing the issue of homophobia in the sport.

                    • tracey

                      If I were an LGBT spectator on Saturday night I would have had a big smile on my face when the song played and I saw all the people singing it too.

                      He is the highest paid rugby player in Aussie Rugby. It cannot be the importance of things to just play when they are used to flog goods and services. If you look at Falou’s twitter feed you can see he shares his latest advertisements of goods with his 124,000 followers. he totally GETS that it is NOT just about playing the game on the field.

                      Actually focusing on this one player is the most focus I have seen by rugby here or Australia on homosexuality and its acceptability or otherwise. Male sport (particularly) has been very homophobic and there is now a clear message both here in NZ and in parts of rugby Australia that homophobia is not ok. I can remember days when rugby would have stayed silent and tacitly thereby approved the message.

                      He is neither innocent nor naive as a professional player and would well understand that he is paid not just for his performance on the field but for his and rugby’s image. he has advisors and he has training by his employer.

                      The saddest thing about all this for me, was how quickly Rugby league, that safe haven for rapists and batterers was to say he could come play for them again. There is a game with a lot of work to do.

                    • Molly

                      I can understand and tautoko the joy any LGBT spectator had hearing this song over the loudspeaker.

                      The issue I have is that isolating the problem that rugby and rugby league has with sexuality equality and abuse issues to one player is letting that community off the hook to some extent.

                      His Twitter feed is a ramble of Bible verses and bizarre interpretations, and the twitter version of happy clapping. Why would anyone expect him to say anything else?

                      His initial – and honest – response, could have lead to a series of articles about the misguided public view of sports heroes as all-knowing role models, or alternatively, about the harm done to us all by fundamentalist Christian views on homosexuality.

                      Instead, we the media and public, were given a target, and used that to focus our attention and anger. I don’t know if long-term it actually makes a change. In some ways, the media and twitterati equivalent of preaching to the choir.

                    • tracey

                      I understand your position Molly and do not disagree vis a vis the media. As someone who works and plays in sport, and has all my life, there are some broader issues here too, or nuances if you like.

                      Sport is so often championed as building character (assumed good) that we do not focus on the extent it builds poor character. Many players treat the position they hold with respect and self regulate, others do not (Aaron Smith, the Rugby league rapists, assaulter sof wives etc).

                    • In Vino

                      And well said Tracey. Sport is not the noble cure-all that some treat it as… But it is a big part of Panem et Circenses, and the media promote abuse such as this, as Molly has said.

            • e-clectic 5.2.1.1.1.2

              Well said, Molly.

        • Sabine 5.2.1.2

          so essentially the bigot hides behind Jeesus. Cause there is absolutely nothing in the new Testament about Jesus condemning homosexuals and debating if they gonna go straight to hell or first thought a few millennia of purgatory . .

          the old testament however contains a lot of obscure references, and not only on homosexuality but also about owning slaves, owning your children, women being property of men etc etc etc. And is it then also ok for someone to claim the right to slavery cause it says so in the bible?

          • tracey 5.2.1.2.1

            It is arguable that hebrews, etc have verses about homosexuality, but fo rme none of that is the issue because that is a book written by people who never met the so-called Jesus.

            • Sabine 5.2.1.2.1.1

              and yet, this is the book evangelic and other protestants refer too. Cause as i said, the Jesus dude did not say much about others people sex live. He did say something like “those among us without sin shall cast the first stone’. And that is what this young fellow should have said, rather then make it abundantly clear that he is a little frightened homophobic hiding his fear behind ‘christianity and jesus’.

    • solkta 5.3

      As the issue lies with certain churches views of homosexuality, that is where the hammer should be falling.

      He doesn’t talk about any church other than to say that he was initially brought up Mormon but that his family left that church. What he does talk about is how he comes to his own understanding from reading the Bible:

      “I read the Bible every day. It gives me a sense of peace I have not been able to find in any other area of my life. It gives me direction. It answers my questions.”

      So it seems to me the hammer is falling on a deserving head.

      • Molly 5.3.1

        “So it seems to me the hammer is falling on a deserving head.”
        So it seems for many. But I disagree. Just one deserving head in a world full of them, and the hammer stays in the one spot?

      • JanM 5.3.2

        As I understand it he now attends the Assembly of God church, which is fundamentalist.
        I’m pleased you said ‘certain churches’. I am not christian myself, but my father was a Methodist minister and that church supported Fran Wilde’s legislation to decriminalise homosexuality. As far as I am aware it holds no negative views about LGBTI

        • tracey 5.3.2.1

          The Methodist Church in NZ schismed over the appointment of homosexual pastors.

          Quick story… I have a dear friend and our friendship is now well over 40 years. her father is/was a lay preacher in the Methodist church in Auckland. I didn’t meet my friends’ parents until I was in a relationship with my current (female partner some 27 years ago). They are lovely people. We were the first gay people they knew they knew.

          My partner helped them search for a new home when their’s became inappropriate for their age due to inclines and they remain in that home today. We traveled sometimes with them and had a watching brief over their daughter, who sometimes lived with us, due to life struggles of her own.

          When the Methodist church went into meltdown over the appointment of homosexual clergy, my friend’s parents, in a surprise to me, went with the side that said yes. My friend told me that until they met us they would have gone the other way.

          Ignorance is SO dangerous. Folau has fed that ignorance and while I accept much of Molly’s comments in this thread (and think it is great that she has taken the time to so eloquently lay it out here) he is responsible for expressing his views and his doubling down. To an extent he seems to be almost seeing himself as a matry now on this point. Sacrificing himself to the ‘word of God’ for this purpose.

          • JanM 5.3.2.1.1

            Thank you for that cool story, Tracey. Yes, I remember the meltdown, but as my father used to say “there’s a slug in every salad”.
            Although in NZ the Methodist church had long had liberal attitudes, due largely, I believe, to their association with the pacifist movement, some of the parishioners, particularly those who had come from Britain, were not of the same mind 🙁

            • tracey 5.3.2.1.1.1

              True enough. The thing is that people who only have the “evil images” in their head of what gay people, or whatever are, believe it and act according to it. Actually meeting those people and discovering they don’t have 2 hears, breath fire etc does make a difference.

              I listened to the video Folau posted. Hell is not painted as a great place to be, quite the contrary, so telling people that is where they are going is not an act of love, no matter whether you say it is or not. Scaring people to get them to think like you…

              • JanM

                telling people that is where they are going is not an act of love.
                Absolutely agree – it is a message of hate, actually – wonder if people like Folau realise this?

          • Molly 5.3.2.1.2

            I caught up with an old school friend recently who has lived in Melbourne for the last thirty or so years, twenty of them as a solo parent.

            She spoke of her utter loneliness – which was apparent – living there while friends and family were here in NZ, and how she finally found community in one of the local churches (who campaigned recently both within the congregation and in public against the marriage equality law.)

            Her son came out to her fairly recently, and she has had to confront the personal human reality of dealing with the consequences of prejudice on someone she loves. (Of course, it would have been better if this realisation had hit home beforehand, but this change is permanent and has led to a deeper understanding.) My initial reaction to her story was that I wouldn’t have expected her to have had to have it confront her, but I reflected on the immense loneliness of her life – and the relief the church community must have provided.

            The sexuality debate needs to be happening in the churches, preferably amongst churchgoers. The perspective Israel reflects causes immense damage to all within the community – but most drastically on LGBTQ members.

    • tracey 5.4

      He is a role model because

      1. Children do not choose who they look up to, they do so because of who their parents seem to love/admire and cos of their own interests and aspiration.

      2. ANY athlete becoming a professional player in the last decade or two completely understand that part of their job. It is NOT just to play a game. There are image and branding requirements, sessions with children, appearances and many other obligations which make up their inflated salaries. bringing the game into disrepute is explained by the employer and, presumably, the player’s lawyer, other misconduct and other expectations are outlined and training given. If a player does not accept the onerous nature of this they do not need to sign the contract. he is perfectly entitled to his beliefs but his employer does not have to accept those beliefs form part of their strategy/model for their game.

      He can resign, find new work, become a pastor or missionary and freely express his views. He is lucky that to have been paid extortionate money to chase a synthetic ball he has that freedom. He may not even have to work again but can volunteer and further his Christian beliefs.

      When you are a highly paid sportsperson I am afraid it is at best naive and at worst arrogant, to think that you are only paid for playing on the field at that moment and the rest of your life is yours. Or you can take a job, lesser paying, out of the limelight and speak your views to your hearts content.

      • Carolyn_Nth 5.4.1

        I dislike the way commercial sporting bodies are setting players up as role models. They really only should be accountable to their employers for how they play the game.

        However, the sporting bodies themselves, in this context have made themselves accountable for views publicly expressed by the players.

        In this case, the Australian Rugby Union has allowed Folau to continue to express views that are causing offence, damage and concern to many people. The guy playing YMCA when an NZ team beat an Aussie team with Folau in it, is actually targeting the Aussie authorities and game, and not just Folau. The buck stops with the Aussie Union.

        • tracey 5.4.1.1

          I understand but as I say children don’t sit down and decide who to admire. The Sports, imo, have simply seen that kids look up to these folk, and have decided to train them accordingly and have contract stipulations to cover behaviour and representation of the “image”. If aplayer doesn’t want to be a potential role model, professional rugby or sport isn’t for them… this is part of the price for getting ridiculous money to chase a synthetic ball.

          It isn’t about whether it is right or wrong per se but that this is what kids do (especially boys as I understand the research). In some ways making expectations clear and giving training is one of the more responsible things some Sports Bodies have done.

          I note that Raelene Castle made the comment that she is aware there are groups looking to “test” Free Speech laws and that “Australian Rugby does not want to be the test case”. Slightly cryptic? Does she mean Religious groups in particular or others? I struggle with this abit because he can have total freedom of speech if he gets another job? Is it a human right to be the highest paid person in rugby chasing a synthetic ball?

          “Castle also admitted RA’s strategy was influenced by fears the “complex” matter would become a test case on freedom of speech.

          “It’s complex on the legal implications for Rugby Australia,” she said.

          When pressed further, Castle said: “As I said, the freedom of speech movement in this country is a very vocal one and I don’t use the word ‘complex’ lightly.

          Ad Feedback

          “I would much rather – and [in] my leadership style [it] would be much preferable to be black and white and give everyone a clear direction. If I thought I could do that in this situation I would have.”

          Folau will start at fullback for the Waratahs in their round 13 clash with the Crusaders on Saturday and on the field appears to be as committed as ever to the game. ”

          https://www.stuff.co.nz/sport/rugby/super-rugby/103848902/rugby-australia-boss-raelene-castle-says-israel-folau-saga-putting-rugby-under-pressure

          • Carolyn_Nth 5.4.1.1.1

            Surely it can’t be about “free speech”, when players sign a commercial contract, which in effect, limits what they can say publicly?

            • tracey 5.4.1.1.1.1

              I agree but clearly, someone wants to fight it on the grounds of religious freedom (Reading between the lines)? I imagine the argument is that suggesting that someone is going to burn in hell for all eternity as a means to scare them into adopting the alleged teachings of Jesus Christ to save their soul cannot possibly bring a game into disrepute…? 😉

              • In Vino

                Ah dear… Sad. If I may quote Brecht rather freely:
                “Sad is the country that has no heroes.”
                “No, sad is the country that has need of heroes.”
                This role-model business is all bloody bonkers when the media run and exploit it.

                • tracey

                  It would be great if mum and dad were children’s role models. But children choose their own…

                  Hero used to mean something, sport has bastardised that

                  • In Vino

                    I think that outstandingly good Mums and Dads do succeed in keeping their children’s hearts and minds. I wish I knew how to increase this trend. The majority so often fail their own kids…

        • JanM 5.4.1.2

          Sportspeople, particularly the more successful ones, have always been role models, along with many of the professional and entertainment people in our society. It behoves people who have that profile to be aware of this fact and act accordingly – as I’m sure you are aware, many let the side down rather badly!
          I am more disgusted with the fundamentalist churches that espouse the hateful crap that Folau and his ilk repeat in the honest but dreadfully mistaken belief that what they are saying is true. They have spread like the plague over our society in the last decades and goodness knows how much harm they are doing with their self-righteous spite!

  6. Visubversa 6

    Great song. I heard it was put together over a weekend after a Nixon aide was found in a compromising position with a young man in the bathroom of the Washington YMCA.

  7. Incognito 7

    Not to quibble about The Village People and YMCA I’d picked Let It Go by Demi Lovato. Maybe not a seat-raiser for a staunch rugby crowd but still …

  8. Bill 8

    Am I really reading some comments here that are attempting to state, in all seriousness, that it’s not okay to take the piss?

    • james 8.1

      Its a little more than taking the piss tho Bill – when its done on purpose to get at someone and their religious beliefs in front of thousands of people in the workplace – its bully behaviour.

      • Bill 8.1.1

        When a clown broadcasts homophobic tosh off the back of God having told him in some wee book he’d written that homosexuality is sinful, then the numbers of levels at which he deserves to be absolutely ripped – well, I’m not identifying and counting each and every one, but they begin to stack up.

        And you’ll have the capacity to note (I’m sure) that’s not at all the same as publicly “going” someone just for being Catholic or whatever. (As has happened at sporting events.)

        If Israel Folau wants to adhere to the Mormon religion and attempt to apply some literal interpretation of the bible to his own life, then that’s entirely his affair and absolutely none of anyone’s business.

        But when he puts damaging shit out there and then hides behind some disingenuous religious nonsense of “it’s not me saying that, it’s God”, – then nah, he makes it other peoples’ business and hands out a free pass to ridicule.

      • Ross 8.1.2

        James

        You might want to hear Nigel Owens’ views on the matter. Owens is gay and almost killed himself largely due to his sexuality and how he thought his parents might feel about him coming out. The fact you defend Folau speaks volumes.

        https://i.stuff.co.nz/sport/rugby/international/103201100/nigel-owens-tells-israel-folau-to-judge-him-on-his-character-not-his-sexuality

    • Molly 8.2

      No. My comments are more about the media and public delight in continuing this story well past its use-by date. Primarily because of the ease in which to do so.

      ( BTW – It doesn’t seem to me like taking the piss – which is a normal part of human interaction, more like an attempt to humiliate in public.)

      Edit again: Not the song itself, the follow up media and twitter comments more so.

      • tracey 8.2.1

        Thanks for that clarification. Yes, the media are in a feeding frenzy which is ironic given their glowing praise of English over the years who was distinctly anti gay… as I suspect Mr Bridges is…

        • cleangreen 8.2.1.1

          Anything to sell papers was the saying in the 1980’s.

          That’s is what we have here.

          • tracey 8.2.1.1.1

            On all sides. Folau is using his “fame” to spread his message too. He knows his “image” sells. He kows things he says are listened to. he knows this for many reasons, including this

            • e-clectic 8.2.1.1.1.1

              ASICS is using his fame.

            • e-clectic 8.2.1.1.1.2

              So how do you feel about Lucy Lawless’s Greenpeace activities?
              Ok to use her fame for that or not?

              • tracey

                What? Talk about red herrings. Hmmmm protesting a proven thing that causes harm, villifying people in the name of an invisible “being”, yes I see how they compare

                • e-clectic

                  Right – so it’s OK for some people to use their fame but not others.

                  It probably depends on whether you agree with them or not. Is that true?

                  • Muttonbird

                    Yeah, promoting conservative Christian homophobia is a world away from Greenpeace activities in most people’s eyes. I suspect you’re on the wrong side of this argument.

                  • Tracey

                    No it is not true your comparison is flawed. What I have actually said is the prid quo pro to his high salary for chasing a synthetic ball are to behave in certain ways relating to the image of his employer and its obligation to youngsters watching.

                    In your attempted analogy, who is Lawless’ employer? Which group of children has ” let down”? The ones who think deep sea drilling is a great idea? Is there a history of mental health a societal bullying and violence towards people who favour deep sea drilling?

                    Do you agree with Falou? Courage time.

                    • e-clectic

                      Do you misspell Folau’s name intentionally?
                      Of course I don’t agree with him or his views but I think he has every right to hold those views, practise and express his beliefs the same as any other person.
                      I don’t believe that he hates gay people. I believe that he thinks his actions are noble and he wants to save them from an eternity in hell. He’s acting entirely consistently with his beliefs as much as they may be anathema to the rest of us.
                      It’s called diversity, which apparently we on the left are in favour of – unless it’s the wrong kind of diversity.

                    • In Vino

                      At the risk of being seen as taking the piss, I think you are entitled to your opinion, e-clectic. Your opinion may arouse responses just as Folau should have known his would.
                      Poor devil – we are all washing around in his wake, while he is probably wondering why so many people are angry.
                      The big problem is often with those who think they have God on their side. Bob Dylan picked it so well when he was so very young.

  9. One Two 9

    More fodder for shallow ‘thinkers”…

    The follow up actions of people other than Falou, say more about them, than they do about him…

    I’m including this article, and a number of the commentators…not just the rugby crowd and PA…

    • tracey 9.1

      Are you a member of the LGBT community or someone struggling with your sexuality? genuine question.

      • One Two 9.1.1

        The question is in no way relevant to the comment I made…

        I am part of the human community, and do not allow myself, my life experiences, my preferences or beliefs to confine or narrow my thoughts…

        There is no excuse for those who are responding to Falou with rank hypocrisy, abuse and bullying tactics….

        No excuse!

        • tracey 9.1.1.1

          Speaking of shallow thinking. How is he being bullied? Was the song played to show Crusdaers LGBT fans they are valued by their team? Is that bullying? Does Falou know the song is a sometimes LGBT anthem?

          “do not allow myself, my life experiences, my preferences or beliefs to confine or narrow my thoughts…”

          You will be the very first human to achieve this. Well done.

          • One Two 9.1.1.1.1

            It is all a form of bullying, tracey…

            It sets factions of human beings against eachother in a manner which is unlikey to contribute towards genuinely positive outcomes…

            I’m certainly not a ‘pioneer’…we’re all on a personal growth journey…just at different stages is all…

            • tracey 9.1.1.1.1.1

              Can you explain how it is bullying? You are just like james at this point, he is posting over and over the word bully or bullying as though that is ipso facto proof of bullying.

              How does your calling those who do not view this as you do “shallow thinkers” fit with “do not allow myself, my life experiences, my preferences or beliefs to confine or narrow my thoughts”

              • One Anonymous Bloke

                How does calling people shallow thinkers not constitute bullying? 🙂

              • One Two

                How long ago did this Falou situation occur…weeks ago…

                There has been a sustained and persistent focus since the day of the original tweet..much of it agressive and vitriolic…

                If you can’t understand how such activity equates to bullying, so be it…

                Use of the term ‘shallow thinkers’ is not a form of bullying…it is an observation based on fact provided by the article, and the majority of the comments made in response to the article…

                • tracey

                  No it is a statement of opinion. That you think your opinion is somehow elevated to fact because you think it rather makes a lie of your former assertion about yourself.

                  Not weeks ago. 8 May was the video. Saturday was the song. And this article is about a single song played to send a positive message to the LGBT spectators at AMI Stadium

                  • One Two

                    No, tracey

                    I’ve already said it was an observation…based from facts…

                    Those ‘facts’ provided are the article and the comments section…

                    The original twitter comment was at least 1-2 weeks ago…yes the article is about song played at the weekend…but that specific event is one which happened during a prolonged campaign against Falou spanding….’weeks’…

                    Still playing out on this blog site…by people who claim to care for the well being of others…

                    • tracey

                      Sorry I did not take in the observation part

                      It is still a judgment One Two.

                  • e-clectic

                    How do you know the motives of the person who played the song?
                    How do you know they “played to send a positive message to the LGBT spectators”?

                    This article says, “The person in control of Christchurch Stadium’s PA system has performed the most outstanding burn on Israel Folau’s homophobic beliefs.”

                    • Tracey

                      Of course I dont know. My comment has been in response to those assuming it was to “bully” Falou. So far most asserting bullying have turned away from outlining how that is so let alone if it was so.

                • One Anonymous Bloke

                  Use of the term ‘shallow thinkers’ is not a form of bullying

                  Of course it is. It implies that you are in a position to judge. It asserts the mental state of the subjects. It disparages said mental state.

                  Further, it labels people without any supporting argument, and now you’re doubling down by claiming it as a “fact”, again without providing so much as an example, let alone a chain of reasoning.

                  But expressing solidarity with the LGBTQ community by playing a song at the footy, under circumstances where one of the players has made it his (well paid) mission in life to condemn said community, well, that ain’t bullying it’s push-back.

                  Heat, kitchen.

  10. ankerawshark 10

    I think playing the YMCA at this match was satirizing Folau…………..

    Satirizing happens a lot to those in the public eye particularly if they speak out……………….

    Possibly it did cause him some hurt or anger. But this can happen to anyone who expresses an opinion in public (e.g. twitter) that others will respond . Playing YMCA was not an attack on Folau, his personality, his rugby playing skills or even Christianity as such.

    The song is a celebration of being gay………………I think it would have been very helpful to see in the context of a rugby game there was support and endorsement in the rugby community for the gay community.

  11. tracey 11

    Was Folau outspoken about playing on the field with men who had glassed their girlfriends, beaten their wives, gang raped? Just wondering?

  12. Bill 12

    So…

    if people didn’t feel compelled to seek “guidance” in order to cope with life, then we wouldn’t have otherwise good people negating their own agency and/or responsibility and however wittingly or unwittingly, peddling crap on the say so of any “higher authority”.

    And that “higher authority”, I guess, can be anything from a religious authority, to a political authority, to another individual’s authority.

    Then there’s peer pressure and the so-called herd instinct to incorporate into the above.

    Quite a mess we make for ourselves then, innit? Not, it seems, such smart apes afterall. More, just grabby little bundles of fear and insecurity making a right old mess of things.

    Plenty of “fixes” out there mind. 🙂

    Just choose which one to follow and away you go – hmm, something about displacement and distance traveled is coming to mind.

    • tracey 12.1

      Abdicating your responsibility for life decisions to a set of rules written thousands of years ago and attributed to an invisible deity has caused problems for millennia…

      I would like us to debate his views, not him as such because too often we have made religious belief taboo, unquestionable and let it pervade under this shroud of untouchability.

      • One Anonymous Bloke 12.1.1

        …debate his views…

        Shortest debate ever.

        1. Ask him to present the evidence that supports his position.
        2. Strike out any logical fallacies.
        3. Note that his argument is null.

        The end.

        PS: works for Simon Bridges too.

      • Bill 12.1.2

        It’s not just what we’d traditionally recognise as religion that would have people abdicate their responsibility/agency.

        There are plenty of “bang up to the minute” political sources of authority and belief that would have us do that too.

        Separating out organised religion as though it’s some kind of special case, and concentrating only on that, doesn’t really move things forward at all.

        [edited for clarity]

  13. Herodotus 13

    The context was that in their recent game Folau’s team the Warratahs had burst out to a 29-0 lead over home team the Canterbury Crusaders but then in an unbelievable choke managed to lose the game 31-29.
    Was there a need to include this cheap shot in the post ?
    Remember that The Crusaders 1st try was the result of an illegal elbow to the head of a defender, that the officials missed. Had they seen it then no try and most probably Crusaders would have been down to 14 players with still over 1/2 the game to play.

    • In Vino 13.1

      Spot-on, but rugby does not seem to be the preoccupation. More the role-model thing plus religion and the media using it all as click-bait..

  14. Pete 14

    What I’ve learned today:
    1 ‘YMCA’ is a gay anthem. (Until today I’d never thought that.)
    2 There was a drunken, baying, catcalling rugby crowd at the rugby in Christchurch on Saturday.
    3 Bullying directed at a single person is not okay. (I take it that bullying directed to a group is okay.)
    4 Israel Folau is allowed to say what he wants and when, where and how he wants.
    5 The DJ at a rugby game is not allowed to play what she/he wants.
    6 The problems caused by religious beliefs are never ending and will reach into all aspects of life.

    • indiana 14.1

      7. Its not bullying if its light ribbing.

      • tracey 14.1.1

        7. It is not bullying unless it meets the criteria for bullying.

        “light ribbing” can be very much in the eye of the beholder. What some in a sport crowd or bar consider “light banter” can be mortifying and bullying to others.

        • greywarshark 14.1.1.1

          The test about what is bullying or light ribbing and how seriously to regard it would be to turn it around on those saying the words. If they did not mind being named as whatever was said and could laugh off someone well-known saying the same thing about them, then I think there would be very few king-hit men hitting the road and going for hospital treatment.

          Sensitivity to one’s own dignity, and having none for that of others is a feature of the yobbo whether he is using religious terms or university grammar argot or gutter slang.

          Looking up gutter and the Urban Dictionary came up with this for heterosexuals. No matter which way your sexuality leans, sensitivity and respect for other people would prevent anyone talking and thinking like this. But it is out there all the same. Some good people have to stand up and condemn it.

          Gutter
          Derived from Gutterslut, a gutter is quite literally a repository for liquid waste. A true gutter is a casual whore, no major daddy-issues or insecurities, simply an effortless lay. In the colloquial sense, a gutter is defined by a girl about 15 pounds overweight with a questionably cute face who will go home with you at the snap of a finger. Usually a dead-fish in the sack, gutters are good for one thing and one thing only: providing a moist orifice for which men can drunkenly pump loads into until they pass out.

          • repateet 14.1.1.1.1

            I’ve been in many social functions where ‘YMCA’ was played and people danced or sang along – places where today’s kids sing and dance to oldies like the Bee Gees and whoever. And been stadiums where in the modern way, silence in breaks in play doesn’t seem to be allowed.

            As I indicated, until today ‘YMCA’ was just another song. I’d like all those who talked to the DJ who played the song at that rugby game what his intention was.

            In the future I’ll be carefully analysing what it really means when favourite songs are blasted out – “Bat out of hell,” “We Will Rock You,” and “Who Let the Dogs Out.”
            There you go, the entertainment will be extended into another dimension by in-match and post-match analysis of what the music was actually all about.

            (I presume what Folau said to gain all the attention was enlightened ribbing.)

            • greywarshark 14.1.1.1.1.1

              I think you have missed knowing about the connections that the YMCA song makes with male homosexuals. I think it has been a happy anthem for them for a while, nothing dark or sinister about it, just happy and gay.

              • Pete

                Right. So everyone in the world connects that song with male homosexuals. I will from today on, I never did before today. And Folau did since the first time he heard it I guess.

                • greywarshark

                  Well sorry – this was just an attempt to bring some basic info into this heated subject – no need to get nasty at me. The religious divisions and attitudes go all the way from acceptance now, to cults with strong unbending precepts about what is right or wrong. Being homosexual is being different yes, but the hostility to it is OTT – it’s crazy-making.

          • tracey 14.1.1.1.2

            I am not sure I understand what you are getting at. There is still an assumption being made the song was to bully Falou not to give support to LGBT folk in the crowd

            • Pete 14.1.1.1.2.1

              There are assumptions being made the song was to bully Falau or to give support to LGBT folk in the crowd.

              There don’t seem to be assumptions made that ‘YMCA’ was played because it is a common stadium song. A popular well-known, stadium song, which a lot of people know some of the lyrics to.

              ” A bunch of guys dressed as Indians and cops might not exactly scream athletics, but for some reason, this song just stuck at sporting events everywhere.

              At this point, the YMCA has become similar to the wave, where everyone knows it and is absolutely expected to throw their hands up when it comes on.” ‘The 20 Most Famous Songs in Sports’

              9. “YMCA,” The Village People. From toddlers to grandmas, everyone gets up at the ballpark and joins in to spell it out. This is perhaps the most long-lasting legacy of the disco era. ‘Top 40 sports songs: They make you jump, cheer, even cry.’

              As well as getting at that, I’m getting at the fact that double guessing the motivation, psychology, and morals of the DJ and analysing the lyrics of anything that is played could be the new dimension for of the game day experience. Pshaw!

              • tracey

                As I said in another comment I wonder if Falou did make that connection at all. But he may have given his pre-christian awakening when he was suffering depression and poor behaviour ( his words not mine).

    • Ross 14.2

      I enjoy this scene from The Simpsons, where Homer takes Bart to a very manly steel mill!

  15. mary_a 15

    This is my take on the Judaeo/Christian religions and the influence they have on its followers.

    If one follows a particular Judaeo/Christian religious doctrine, dominated by a ‘God’, then if one claims to be a sincere and staunch follower of that faith and supports their ‘God’s’ plan without challenge, then that person IMO believes in his/her ‘God’s’ plan unquestionably, regardless how evil or vile that plan is. It has a very strong bearing on how they live their lives. They are what they believe.

    Same goes for other religions as well, as far as I’m concerned.

    I’ve been around over seventy years. Yet in all that time, no Jew or Christian has been able to define their God to me. Or explain why there is so much suffering and injustice in the world. “It’s ‘God’s’ plan” is the usual response. A damn wicked plan if you ask me!

    BTW, love the Village People, in particular YMCA. Made my day. Despite my age I still always dance along to their great music 🙂

  16. Mark 16

    Whoever was responsible for that happening is low rent trailer trash. How disrespectful. The guy is entitled to express his views on twitter just like any other nut-job; doesn’t give you the right to humiliate him at a public event.

    • One Anonymous Bloke 16.1

      That’s some mighty strange double standards you’ve got there. His actions were conducted in a public place too. That being so, a public display of solidarity with his intended victims was entirely appropriate.

      • In Vino 16.1.1

        And you just humiliated him on this pretty public medium by openly calling him a nut-job. How vile of you. How disrespectful.

    • McFlock 16.2

      Hey, it’s not like they played “It’s Raining Men”.

  17. adam 17

    Why do all the right wingers on this site suddenly throw all their toys out of the cot when someone has a laugh at their expense?

    It’s like they don’t have a sense of humour or somthing…

    Have a laugh for the love of God.

  18. Akldnut 18

    I just read Folau’s explanation and the first sentence is “People’s lives are not for me to judge. Only God can do that.

    He probably should have played the wise old sage and shut up after the first sentence or qualified it with “I think this is what Gods plan for Gays are ………..”

    Read more at https://www.playersvoice.com.au/israel-folau-im-a-sinner-too/#hP2r6YXlQ883LEtr.99

    • tracey 18.1

      He is hiding behind “God’s” words. he is an adult and accordingly, he needs to be open and honest that he believes all gays are going to hell if they dont acknowledge the mythical figure, Jesus Christ, as their savior. Some are excusing him by suggesting he never said it, God did.

      I suspect there lies in this man’s background a great deal of pain and/or suffering. However he is an adult and has to accept adult consequences, one of which is that he has 124,000 “followers” on twitter and many more in rugby and rugby league and not only do some not have to agree with him, they can disagree with him. That includes playing YMCA at a football match

      • Gabby 18.1.1

        Do you think he doesn’t really believe in god?

        • tracey 18.1.1.1

          What? No. I am responding to those like Mark Reason who says Falou wasnt saying he doesnt like gays, God was…

          • Ken 18.1.1.1.1

            Heaven sounds like it’s going to be full of self-righteous arseholes.

            • McFlock 18.1.1.1.1.1

              That’s always the risk for religious folks – you bust a gut denying your true impulses, even though you’re probably not too bad a person anyway. End up spending an eternity with jerks.

              I’ve mostly figured that if I’m reasonably ok, and god’s not a dick, I won’t have too much to worry about in the unlikely eventuality that I wake up dead one day.

              • tracey

                In the unlikely event Heaven turns out to be real…

                I object to the notion of some who are religious that unless you follow the words of some blokes written a couple of thousand years ago, kindly interpreted by a modern day pastor, usually a male living a well heeled life, that you cannot self regulate.

  19. Morrissey 19

    Ahhh yes, the Christchurch fans that idolized that arch-cheat Richie McCaw. Moral paragons, they are.

    • repateet 19.1

      I reckon the ratio of cheating McCaw did is in direct proportion to the amount of drivel written about him cheating. When it gets to arch-cheating we’re at the arch-drivel standard.

  20. Gabby 20

    Does Izzy need you going snofwaky on his behalf jimbo? You turning sjw libtard in your dotage? Can you take Izzy to one side and explain why he needs to rid himself of the tats? Point him to Leviticus.

    • tracey 20.1

      Isnt Leviticus Old Testament and Falou is strictly Nrw Testament?

      • Ross 20.1.1

        The New testament doesn’t absolve Folau. Apparently the NT refers to 124 different sins, one of which is “giving offense”.

        And as Matthew opined:

        “Judge not, that you be not judged. For with the judgment you pronounce you will be judged, and with the measure you use it will be measured to you. Why do you see the speck that is in your brother’s eye, but do not notice the log that is in your own eye? Or how can you say to your brother, ‘Let me take the speck out of your eye,’ when there is the log in your own eye? You hypocrite, first take the log out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to take the speck out of your brother’s eye.”

        I really can’t see Folau going to heaven. 🙂

        http://www.angelfire.com/empire2/psuclass0/sinlist.html

  21. Ken 21

    So freedom of speech/expression cuts both ways……..who’d have thought?

  22. ropata 22

    A bit of context. Folau’s tweet:

    With great love i wanted to share this video in the hope that people watch it and think about it. Jesus is coming back soon and he wants us to turn to him through repentance and baptism in the name of Jesus Christ (Acts 2:38) please don't harden your heart https://t.co/PtDoPCQDco— Israel Folau (@IzzyFolau) May 7, 2018

    The Wilkerson video (one of the greatest preachers of his time BTW and a remarkable evangelist who changed many lives for the better) decried the moral depravity of our culture, indeed. Is anyone denying that the world is a shitty place because humans have made it so? Aren’t we (humanity) as a race prone to violence, theft, self indulgence, and neglect of the poor?

    I get the feeling that Izzy was also trolling. But that is a pretty standard evangelical message, he’s just more upfront about it than most “nice” Christians

    I find it interesting how much “love and tolerance” some people are showing when someone regards sexuality as sacred before God and speaks the truth forthrightly.

    BTW The Bible speaks a lot more about helping the poor and oppressed than rules of the bedroom (and those rules were for the nation of Israel & the Church, not unbelievers)

    I despise this notion of censoring religious expression under the guise of hate speech. This mindset of things you are allowed to say and having safe spaces and all being polite is 1984 dystopian bullshit.

    • One Anonymous Bloke 22.1

      God

      Which one? Shiva? Thor? Zeus? Apollo?

      the truth

      The truth is that sky fairies don’t exist. Human goodness and ethics have been around for a lot longer than the Toad of Nazareth. Apparently “censorship” is just fine when it’s the rainbow community you’re attacking.

      • Gosman 22.1.1

        Yes but just because you obviously have an issue deciding which one doesn’t preclude others from promoting theirs.

    • Ross 22.2

      I despise this notion of censoring religious expression under the guise of hate speech.

      Me too. Except no one is censoring him. Various people (see Nigel Owens) are questioning the wisdom of his comments given the relatively high rate of suicide among young gay men. But he is legally enitled to say what he’s said. But free speech doesn’t mean freedom from consequences. Try shouting “fire” in a crowded cinema and you’ll know what I mean. 🙂

      BTW Folau is a first class hypocrite. Working on the Sabbath, according to the Bible, is a stoning offence. Folau plays rugby on the Sabbath. He also has tattoos, yet the Bible is clear that we are not to “defile” our bodies with such adornments. It also says that he who is without sin let him cast the first stone. Given Folau’s past with alcohol and “random women”, he might be expected to be a little more forgiving and understanding and not take such a selective and narrow minded approach to the Bible. I can only assume he’s an unhappy man who takes pleasure out of demonising others.

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Suicide_among_LGBT_youth

      https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/09581596.2014.946887

      • ropata 22.2.1

        Don’t reckon he’s unhappy. Seems more like an enthusiastic young convert who is sharing the Gospel in the hope that others will find God. He’s a rugby player not a theologian, his tweets are given so much more weight than they deserve because the media love controversy. And then a bunch of idiots pile on the social media attacks, so Folau feels (correctly) that people hate him because of his beliefs.

  23. Ross 23

    Folau’s twitter messages aren’t improving. What a sad man.

    https://twitter.com/IzzyFolau?ref_src=twsrc%5Egoogle%7Ctwcamp%5Eserp%7Ctwgr%5Eauthor

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  • Wairoa gets up to $6.1m to rebuild heart of CBD
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    2 days ago
  • Major Events support for creative and cultural events
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  • Classroom internet in hundreds of schools to get a boost
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  • Construction workforce, apprenticeships hit record highs
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  • NZ concludes digital economy trade talks with Singapore and Chile
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    3 days ago
  • Provincial Growth Fund to fund Waipukurau cultural development and tourism
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  • 21 new judges boost diversity, improve access to justice
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    3 days ago
  • Puhinui to Auckland Airport in 10 minutes
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  • Advancing New Zealand’s trade agenda focus of Europe meetings
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    4 days ago
  • Minister of Defence to visit counterparts in US and Canada
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  • Government to deliver family carers $2000 pay rise, expand scheme to spouses this year
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    5 days ago
  • Ko te reo kua mū: Piri Sciascia
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    6 days ago
  • Minister opens new ecosanctuary at Cape Farewell
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  • Pacific partners work together to provide additional support to Australia
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  • Kaikōura $10.88 million boost in tourism & business
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  • Govt accounts in surplus, debt remains low
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  • Progress with new Police station in Mahia
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  • Plans to protect the future of whitebaiting announced
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    2 weeks ago
  • Getting more out of our most productive firms
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    2 weeks ago
  • NZDF sends more support to Australia
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  • New Zealand joins partners in calling for full investigation into air crash in Iran
    Acting Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs Rt Hon Winston Peters says that developments suggesting a surface-to-air missile is responsible for the downing of the Ukrainian International Airlines flight in Iran is disastrous news. “New Zealand offers its deepest sympathies to the families of the 176 victims. It is ...
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  • Staying connected to Australian agriculture
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  • Investment in schools – a commitment to communities
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    2 weeks ago
  • New Zealand Defence Force sends support to Australia
    Minister of Defence Ron Mark today announced New Zealand is sending three Royal New Zealand Air Force NH90 helicopters and crew, and two NZ Army Combat Engineer Sections as well as a command element to support the Australian Defence Force efforts in tackling the Australian fires.  The New Zealand Defence Force ...
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    3 weeks ago